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CSE Professor Recognized Not Once, Not Twice, but Three Times in Year-End Honors

UC San Diego Christine Alvarado

Computer Science and Engineering professor Christine Alvarado

CSE Associate Teaching Professor Christine Alvarado is no stranger to winning awards, particularly for her teaching. But what’s unusual is that starting June 3, she will be accepting not just one or two such awards, but three. The honors will come from the Tau Beta Pi honors engineering society, the Jacobs School of Engineering, and the Academic Senate.

On Saturday, June 3, UC San Diego’s California Psi chapter of Tau Beta Pi (TBP) will hold its annual end-of-year banquet. The event features a networking dinner with alumni, industry guests, faculty and the society’s student members. The event will also be an occasion to hand out outstanding faculty awards, which typically go to two or three faculty based on a vote of the chapter’s members. “Every year our members nominate faculty members whom they believe have had a significant impact on the lives of young engineers,” said Rachel Hsiong, president of TBP’s UC San Diego chapter.

After the votes were counted, CSE’s Alvarado emerged as one of the 2017 recipients of the TBP Faculty of the Year Award. She will formally accept the award following the annual dinner, which appropriately takes place in the CSE auditorium this Saturday from 6:30pm to 9pm. The honors society will also introduce its new leadership team for the next academic year, and will look back at the year in review of TBP activities and achievements.

A broader group of seniors from all six Jacobs School departments were eligible to nominate favorite professors for the school’s annual Faculty of the Year Award. Nominees were graded in three categories: classroom engagement and teaching style; clarity of instruction; and helpfulness in supporting learning. Only one professor could be selected, and according to organizers, Alvarado was the runaway favorite, capturing the highest rankings of all nominees across all the rating categories (with an average of 9.83 out of 10 points).

The reviews were uniformly complimentary “She is really engaging and explains complex topics clearly,” noted one student. Another commented that Alvarado “made me really feel like computer science was something I thoroughly enjoyed when I first started.” Added a third student who nominated Alvarado: “She is one of the reasons why I chose to remain and continue with this field.”

Alvarado will accept her Faculty of the Year Award from Jacobs School Dean Albert P. Pisano during the 2017 Ring Ceremony, which is scheduled for 8-10pm on Saturday, June 17 on Warren Mall.

While those two awards primarily reflected support from students, CSE’s Alvarado is also being honored by her fellow faculty members of the Academic Senate. Alvarado is one of five Senate members selected to receive Distinguished Teaching Awards for the 2016-2017 academic year. She will accept her award along with other recipients at the Academic Senate awards ceremony set for Monday, October 16 from 2-4pm in the Faculty Club.

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